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Re: new nvi option: expandtab

On Wed, Dec 10, 2008 at 08:01:49AM +0000, Roy Marples wrote:
> Once nvi has vim's visual mode editing so I can trivially move chunks
> text around or run a regex on a specific block easily then I'd say it's
> good enough for everyday administrative tasks.

I'd argue against this feature because it's already in nvi: you can go
to line A, press "m" followed by "a", then go to line B and press "m"
followed by "b" and enter the following ex command:


The step of marking B isn't even required; you can mark point A and then
set your cursor to line B and enter the command


By leaving the location empty in the range specification, vi will know
you mean the current cursor position.

> I use vim extensively and can live without syntax highlighting and a
> nice status bar telling me what line/col I'm at

The "status bar" is also there in nvi, use  :set ruler

> but I just can't work without visual mode. It's just too useful :)

I think it's a reasonably nice convenience function, but not essential,
as everything's there as I described above.
The only thing that vim can do with visual mode that I don't know how
to do with nvi is "rectangular select", but I suppose that's one of those
"fancy features" that shouldn't go into nvi. I don't think it's needed
very often, either.

> On another note - will we ever see a nvi that works with a
> missing/invalid/broken $TERM setting?

Does vim work with missing/broken $TERM? How does it know what terminal
type you're on? Does it make a guess?

A useful addition to nvi that would really work would be to fall back to
ex mode when TERM is not set, with a warning.

"The process of preparing programs for a digital computer
 is especially attractive, not only because it can be economically
 and scientifically rewarding, but also because it can be an aesthetic
 experience much like composing poetry or music."
                                                        -- Donald Knuth

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